With all of the projects on the CitiCar, one of the most important ones is to upgrade the batteries to Lithium. I found some Lithium Ion Chevy Volt batteries. I took the measurements, made some cardboard cutouts, and tried to plan out where the batteries could sit. I just barely could not fit two on each side. I was hoping that maybe the measurements were off.
I took delivery of two lithium batteries a couple weeks ago. Each module was configured to deliver 48 volts at 50 amp hours, for a capacity of 2 kWh. I spent some time placing the battery modules in different positions in the CitiCars’ battery tray to determine if I could fit more than two batteries under the seats for more range and less demand on each battery.
It wasn’t exactly perfect, but I saw a way to make them fit. I went ahead and ordered two more batteries. I could almost fit a fifth one, but it was simply too tight for my comfort, and I could use the space for other things such as a motor controller, DC-to-DC converter, and possibly the charge controller as well.
Tonight I started out trying to cut the bottom flange of the batteries where the batteries coolant had passed through. I watched a few videos on people tearing down the batteries to get an idea where I could cut without coming close to the Li-Ion cells. I got out my rotary tool and went to town.
It quickly turned into a challenge. The layers to cut through are composed of plastic, rubber gaskets, coolant plates, and coolant still remaining within. The smell was pretty awful as well.
The rotary tool was having a tough time and was getting too hot to handle. I started using some metal shears and a wrench to chip away a little and strong arm it a bit. I wasn’t getting anywhere fast. In the end, I used a hacksaw.
The hacksaw was quick and clean. Rather than having black rubber melted on everything, I could see the profile of the rubber gaskets and cooling plates against the plastic and air pockets.
It took a bit longer to finish off the bottom cut since it was thicker, and cut into an unused brass threading. I believe it was originally used to both keep the batteries together, and keep the water intake bolted onto the battery. Looking back at the
In other news, my 10mm Hex/Allen wrench came in today. It was too big to insert into the axles fill plug. Going down, 9mm is a non standard size. I purchased a set that contained contained a wide range of sizes in both metric and SAE with balls on the end of the arms. The SAE set includes 3/8″ and 5/16″, to which I hope one will fit. It’s also got a set of star wrenches, but I’ve rarely had a use for them in the past.
Some nuts for the battery terminals should arrive tomorrow, allowing me to drive the car again.
I ordered some magazines with articles about CitiCar/Comuta-Car:
- Consumer Reports October 1976
- Hemmings Classic Car September 2018
- Car and Driver March 1994
- New York Magazine May 21, 1979
- Popular Mechanics July 1974
- Golf Car Options Magazine January 2018
These are the products I’ve purchased that are mentioned.
|NEW Lithium Ion Chevy Volt 48vdc 2kwh 50ah battery Golf Cart Off Grid Solar EV|
|Dremel 4300-5/40 High Performance Rotary Tool Kit with LED Light- 5 Attachments & 40 Accessories- Engraver, Sander, and Polisher- Perfect for Grinding, Cutting, Wood Carving, Sanding, and Engraving|
|Stanley Hacksaw 24 Tpi 12 “|
|Columbian By Wilton Aviation Snip Set 3pc. 30676 Straight, Right, Left|
|Consumer Reports October 1976|
Hemmings Classic Car September 2018
Car and Driver March 1994
New York May 21, 1979
|Golf Car Options Magazine – January 2018|
|Popular Mechanics July 1974|
|REXBETI Hex Key Allen Wrench Set, SAE Metric Star Long Arm Ball End Hex Key Set Tools, Industrial Grade Allen Wrench Set, S2 Steel|